NEW YORK — “On the one hand she’s living the dream, her dream. On the other hand she’s living with a nightmare.”
That’s what Erin Andrews’ attorney told a Nashville jury Friday during closing arguments in her $75 million lawsuit over a nude video that was recorded and posted online without her consent.
Andrews’ attorney, Bruce Broillet, urged the 12 jurors — seven women and five men — to see themselves as potential hotel guests.
“We turn ourselves over to hotels and their protection,” he said. “Hotels need to meet reasonable expectations of security.”
He argued that in Andrews’ case there was negligence and these expectations were not met.
During her testimony, Andrews said she has suffered because of the video for the last seven years. She was forced to seek help in dealing with the trauma and now has an elaborate strategy for checking out hotels she stays in. Her parents told the court that she was a “shell” of her former self.
“You don’t really realize how long four minutes is until it’s your naked body, you getting dressed for a football game,” Andrews testified.
Broillet encouraged the jury to award her damages that took into account the “full amount of harm that’s been done to her” and not minimize the importance of this case.
He also said that looking beautiful and glamorous “isn’t consent to be recorded naked in private time.”
Broillet reminded the jury that in a civil case the “burden of proof is what is more likely than not.” In a criminal case the burden of proof is beyond a reasonable doubt.
“You will always be remembered as Erin Andrews’ jury,” he told them.
The defense’s lawyer, Marc Dedman, told the jury that both sides agree that the convicted stalker Michael Barrett is the criminal and the one responsible for the video.
Dedman noted that in his testimony Barrett said he was solely responsible for the video and that no one else was to blame.
During cross examination of Andrews, the defense suggested that her income had increased since the video went viral.
Andrews’ suit is being brought against Barrett and the owner and management company of the Nashville Marriott where the video was taken.
Before closing arguments, the judge directed a guilty verdict against Barrett. The jury must still determine how culpable the hotel ownership and management are. If found guilty, the jury will also set the amount of damages to be paid.
The jury will begin deliberations Monday.